Skip to main content

Building a Building: Nuclear Plant Component Makers See Growth

A company called Report Linker has released a, well, report called “Nuclear Energy Technologies Worldwide: Components and Manufacturing.” It can be yours for the low, low price of $3,195 (we get the idea of pricing something at $9.95, but we think Report Link could have gone sporty and priced this at $3,200). We checked for change under the couch cushions, then decided to settle for the press release instead:

The U.S. is the global leader in nuclear energy technology manufacturing, having a total market value of nearly $45.2 billion in 2002 and growing to an estimated $50.8 billion by year-end 2009. By 2013, SBI estimates that the U.S. market value will reach $61.1 billion, growing at an eleven-year Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 2.8%.

The U.S., France, and Japan comprise more than half of the global value of nuclear energy technology manufacturing. SBI estimates that France’s market value will grow from $28.9 billion in 2009 to $34.8 billion in 2013 (3.4% CAGR) and Japan will grow from $19.6 billion to $23.7 billion (3.4%) in 2013.

They also report that South Korea and China are rising quickly and offer the somewhat puzzling news that the Netherlands and Pakistan are developing into potent nuclear component suppliers. Okay, the Netherlands maybe, but Pakistan seems shaky enough to ward off big orders. We frankly think they may be underestimating U.S. growth, but that may be because they count only American companies and not Japanese (Toshiba, Hitachi), French (AREVA, EDF) and other foreign outfits operating here.

But it’s a press release: we could always forgo that elective surgery we’ve been eyeing and buy the book to delve into the details. What’s heartening is that the numbers continue trending upward – the nuclear business is fully mature (wind, solar, biomass and so on are not yet so and will probably see growth described as “explosive” – assuming the energy/climate change bill in Congress isn’t watered down to gruel.) So while the percentages offered are small, they are positive and the real numbers are in the billions. We’ll take it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

How Nanomaterials Can Make Nuclear Reactors Safer and More Efficient

The following is a guest post from Matt Wald, senior communications advisor at NEI. Follow Matt on Twitter at @MattLWald.

From the batteries in our cell phones to the clothes on our backs, "nanomaterials" that are designed molecule by molecule are working their way into our economy and our lives. Now there’s some promising work on new materials for nuclear reactors.

Reactors are a tough environment. The sub atomic particles that sustain the chain reaction, neutrons, are great for splitting additional uranium atoms, but not all of them hit a uranium atom; some of them end up in various metal components of the reactor. The metal is usually a crystalline structure, meaning it is as orderly as a ladder or a sheet of graph paper, but the neutrons rearrange the atoms, leaving some infinitesimal voids in the structure and some areas of extra density. The components literally grow, getting longer and thicker. The phenomenon is well understood and designers compensate for it with a …

Why America Needs the MOX Facility

If Isaiah had been a nuclear engineer, he’d have loved this project. And the Trump Administration should too, despite the proposal to eliminate it in the FY 2018 budget.

The project is a massive factory near Aiken, S.C., that will take plutonium from the government’s arsenal and turn it into fuel for civilian power reactors. The plutonium, made by the United States during the Cold War in a competition with the Soviet Union, is now surplus, and the United States and the Russian Federation jointly agreed to reduce their stocks, to reduce the chance of its use in weapons. Over two thousand construction workers, technicians and engineers are at work to enable the transformation.

Carrying Isaiah’s “swords into plowshares” vision into the nuclear field did not originate with plutonium. In 1993, the United States and Russia began a 20-year program to take weapons-grade uranium out of the Russian inventory, dilute it to levels appropriate for civilian power plants, and then use it to produce…

Missing the Point about Pennsylvania’s Nuclear Plants

A group that includes oil and gas companies in Pennsylvania released a study on Monday that argues that twenty years ago, planners underestimated the value of nuclear plants in the electricity market. According to the group, that means the state should now let the plants close.

Huh?

The question confronting the state now isn’t what the companies that owned the reactors at the time of de-regulation got or didn’t get. It’s not a question of whether they were profitable in the '80s, '90s and '00s. It’s about now. Business works by looking at the present and making projections about the future.

Is losing the nuclear plants what’s best for the state going forward?

Pennsylvania needs clean air. It needs jobs. And it needs protection against over-reliance on a single fuel source.


What the reactors need is recognition of all the value they provide. The electricity market is depressed, and if electricity is treated as a simple commodity, with no regard for its benefit to clean air o…